Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Take Control in This Weather; Heavy Snowfall Has Seen Countless Motorists Abandon Their Vehicles, Causing Chaos for Other Road Users. Here, SIMON MEECHAN Explains How to Drive in the Snow

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Take Control in This Weather; Heavy Snowfall Has Seen Countless Motorists Abandon Their Vehicles, Causing Chaos for Other Road Users. Here, SIMON MEECHAN Explains How to Drive in the Snow

Article excerpt

EVEN a small amount of snow can give many motorists the jitters but there are steps you can take on the road to make winter driving as safe as possible.

According to research commissioned by Goodyear Tyres, 53% of motorists who responded to a survey said they are nervous about driving in snow or ice.

A further 48% say de-icing their windscreens in the morning is a problem.

Before driving, you should make sure your car is ready for snow, by checking tyre tread, allowing more time to clear your windows and making sure you have enough screen washer and de-icer.

With a week of weather warnings predicting snow showers and freezing weather in the North East, the tyre manufacturer has pulled together tips for driving in the snow.

Ice means less grip in the roads Two common problems are oversteer and understeer, where cars turn too much or too little due to decreased grip in front or rear tyres on slippy surfaces.

How to handle understeer The car is not turning as much as you would like, because the front tyres have lost grip. Don't increase your steering angle or hit the brakes, as this will only make it worse. Instead, take your foot off the accelerator and stay off the brake. The weight of your car will now shift forward. Carefully decrease the steering angle. You should be able to gently steer your car back to the desired path.

How to handle oversteer The car is turning more than you want it to, because the rear tyres have lost grip. Take the following actions, while paying close attention to the response of the car. Gently accelerate and the weight of your car will shift back to the rear wheels. At the same time, steer in the same direction in which the rear end is Turn to Page 40 From Page 39 sliding. Look in the direction you want the car to go. That way, you'll be ready to adjust the car's path as soon as it starts to respond to your corrections.

Here's Goodyear's top tips for driving in snow and ice Watch your speed Roads are far more treacherous in poor weather. Remember stopping distances are increased on icy or wet roads so slow down.

Check your tyres for wear Check your tyre pressure and tread depth regularly (Goodyear recommends a minimum tread depth of 4mm for winter tyres to ensure optimal performance). …

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